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Marcos: Continuing Kadiwa stalls answer to food crisis, high prices of commodities

The Philippine government is inclined to continue and increase the presence of Kadiwa stalls in the country as this will address food crisis and the high prices of commodities, President Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. said on Monday.

"Patuloy po naming gagawin ito, padadamihin, palalakihin natin... pararamihin natin... mas importante paramihin natin lalo na sa mga lugar na hirap ang tao... hindi pa kaya ang presyuhan kung nasa palengke," Marcos said in his message during the launch of "Kadiwa ng Pangulo" in Cebu.

(We will continue to do this, increase and improve... it's important that we increase the stalls especially in areas where residents cannot afford the increase of the prices of basic commodities in the market.)

"Ito na ang aming sagot doon sa nagiging krisis dito sa ating pagkain, sa ating pagtaas ng presyo. Ipagpatuloy po natin ito para naman itong ating mga kababayan hindi na masyadong maghihirap..." he added.

(This is our response to the food crisis and the increasing prices of goods. We will continue this to ease the burden of our kababayans.)

"Kadiwa ng Pangulo" will allow farmers and micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) to directly sell their products.

The President said there are more than 500 Kadiwa stalls across the country catering to the basic needs of consumers at a cheaper price.

According to Agriculture Assistant Secretary Kristine Evangelista, the agency will continue to work with local government units for the continuity of this kind of project.

"We will work closely with the local government. In the past po kasi 'yung mga ni-launch natin na lugar, naging regular place po sila... naging every pay day so 'yun din po ang titingnan natin kung ating magagawa dito. We will look at the turnout of the food traffic and also see kung ano pang mga commodities ang kailangan," she told reporters in a separate interview.

(In the past, what we've launched in other places have become regular. We will check if we can do this here also. We will look at the turnout of the food traffic and see what commodities are still needed.)

Asked about the long term plan to lower prices of commodities, Evangelista said the DA has this Kadiwa Food Market Mobilization.

"This will definitely capacitate more cooperatives to be able to consolidate more products... economies of scale kasi ang pinag-uusapan dito eh (we are talking about economies of scale here). Nakita natin ang trader may kakayahan to consolidate metric tons at sila na ang magsasabi kung anong presyo (we see that traders are capable of consolidating metric tons and they can give the prices as well)," she said.

"Giving that capacity to our farmers, then 'yung presyo mapoprotektahan natin (we can protect the prices) from the farm gate to consumers," she added.

During the holiday season last year, the Marcos administration started a substantial number of Kadiwa stores and outlets all over the country as part of its measures to ensure food security and help consumers from rising prices.

Last year, the government's Kadiwa ng Pasko generated P418 million in sales. Its selling efforts served 1.22 million households and benefitted 450 farmer cooperatives and associations (FCAs) and agri-fishery enterprises nationwide.—AOL, GMA Integrated News